Saturday, June 24, 2006

Mini Saturday Mix

I posted a mix-tape I had made, as one of the very first posts on this blog. That can be found here. It's Saturday, I'm tired, I'm going out soon, so I figured instead of not posting anything, I should post the tracks from that which are still online, so that maybe you can investigate some new music. Sounds good to me. Some of them have appeared here before, but... Here they are:

Songs from my very first online mixtape

Dispatch - The General
Voxtrot - The Start Of Something
The Spill Canvas - All Hail The Heartbreaker
Robin Allender - We, Emmanuel Light, Love Ocean
Great Lake Swimmers - Moving Pictures, Silent Films
Reverie Sound Revue - Walking Around, Waiting Downtown
The Silent Type - Ink and Blood
Say Hi To Your Mom - Hooplas Involving Circus Tricks

Watching The Fire Burning


Ocean Walk (Highly Recommended!)

The self-proclaimed "Van Morrison of rap" actually sounds like Bruce Springsteen sitting around a garden full of midges, rapping over a loose lazy piano line - played by the head of Bella Union (Simon Raymonde). This song is a breeze of fresh air; the spinning of your head as you fall from a long day's hassle and sweat into your bed - still dirty but relaxed. The constant talk of 'steps til' is reminiscent of an Army Sergeant preparing his men for the march ahead. The fields of life they'll have to walk through. The beaches they'll fall apart on. Words don't quite describe this song. It's more of a feeling you experience. Like walking through the city across seasons - past the homeless freezing outside in Winter; past the youth's breaking into cars during Summer. Like a barbeque with friends that gets rowdy. But you know it will all work out ok. This song is the sound of summer - sad, reluctant, lazy, hopeful, triumphant.


Somethin' For The Kids
Gaston Ave.

#1: Slow, silly, summer. Once again, hopeful. Opportunities sprawl in front of us and lie down like sleeping dogs. We have to know what to do with them when the time comes. Similarities can be found with Shawn Mullans' Lullaby.
#2: Do I hear 'A Wolf At The Door'? A nice female vocal is tethered onto the mix. Chill out for the chilled out. But neither of these two songs quite match up to the brilliance that is Ocean Walk, it seems - they're mere sketches in comparison to the fully realised potential.

Simon Raymonde's first impressions: 'A very young kid from Florida. This guy was so... so articulate, so intelligent. A really beautiful kid. Looks like a beach, sort of, surfer, sort of, dude.'


Radiohead - A Wolf At The Door

[Listen / Closely / Buy]

Monday, June 19, 2006

Something about those bright colours would always make you feel better

Bright Eyes

Haligh, Haligh, a lie, Haligh

Where did my love affair with Bright Eyes start? Was it on that balcony in Spain through the cheap broken headphones connected to a now broken mini-disc player? Or was it all those nights I stayed up 'til 7am on the internet? It was dial-up then. Every song had to be worth it. And how many Bright Eyes songs did I download that were woeful (no pun intended) - constructed with the most heartbreaking lyrics yet delivered with the most unlistenable voice?

Too few, it seems. Since that time three or four years ago, Conor Oberst has changed his sound a bit. He's become more versatile, able to deliver electronic renditions with a heart, and traditional country singer-songwriter tales with real emotion - not just the faux, take-it-or-leave-it pop kind associated with the style. And obviously, his vocals have become much more... mainstream? Less raw in any case.

But back then... A dog barks. A kid whines. Still young, still growing up, still melodramatic. Let your guard down and you'll feel the emotion. You won't write it off, as another piece of hipster chic. It's not another angsty anthem. It's genuine emotion; innocent, broken-hearted, strummed solemnly.

But now we speak with ruined tongues
And the words we say aren’t meant for anyone.
It’s just a mumbled sentence to
A passing acquaintance,
But there was once you.

Even if you hate his voice - and many do - you have to admit that his lyrics are breath-taking. I relate to that little excerpt quite a lot. It's a smile, a nod, and a turn away. Find a distraction quickly. Speak quietly and hope she doesn't hear you. You understand the way things are now; you were her best friend, now you're not. Are you unclear? Do you not understand how things ended up this way? Go on, let the guard down. Break it down through tears and alcohol. Let yourself be free of all your lies, just for this minute.

He says the choices were given
And now, you must live them
Or just not live,
But do you want that?





Bright Eyes - Padraic My Prince
* [this song is the definition of lo-fi intensity]

Elsewhere: Daytrotter has some excellent session songs by Casey Dienel. Not only is the writing on the site constantly excellent, but they also feature fabulous artists, and host exclusive tracks. Do you need reasons to like Casey Dienel? Ok. She's got a lovely voice. She's been compared to Regina Spektor. She covers Pavement as one of her session songs [...And now we see the flock follow the hyperlinks]. She sounds like this:

Casey Dienel

The La La Song

Intrigued? Discover her Daytrotter session.